SHANE Harwood made the perfect return to Ballarat Cricket Association club firsts competition on Saturday, helping lead Brown Hill to a convincing opening-round triumph over last season’s finalists, Darley.
The former Australian paceman warmed into the season with a tidy 4-13 from 14.3 overs as the Bulls defended their day one total of 7-267.
Harwood took until his 11th over to claim the scalp of Darley first-drop Jake Wilkie (30) before dismissing Rohan Parag (52) and tail-enders Daniel Vakirevic (0) and Terrence Curwin-King (0).
His efforts saw the home side rolled for 177 in the 67th over of the day.
Brown Hill captain Jason Knowles said Harwood bowled sharp early in the day on a Darley wicket that was not conducive to pace or bounce.
“He bowled very well and was very disciplined the whole time, even when he wasn’t taking wickets. This helped build pressure on the batting side, which is what we want from our bowlers this year,” Knowles said.
“(Harwood) brings a lot of experience and professionalism to the side out of the field.”
In a tough day for the Lions, Lachie Herring was the other shining light, with 51 opening the batting.
Brown Hill now prepares for a clash with fellow round one winner Golden Point, while Darley can look to bounce back when it takes on Ballarat-Redan.